NEW YORK, NY – Another weekend is in the books and the rugby world has stories ranging from terrific to tragic, with shocking news that 3 Clermont players were attacked by unknown men wielding machetes for unknown reasons. That is not a misprint… Back on the pitch, there was the 1st round of Super Rugby playoffs and the final leg of the Elgon Cup… Finally, we have the latest transfer news/rumors and USA Rugby updates.
Clermont Players Attacked: In as surreal a news story as we’ve seen, French internationals Benjamin Kayser, Julien Pierre and Aurélien Rougerie have been hospitalized following an attack in the southern town of Millau, where Clermont hold preseason training. Apparently, the three were returning to their hotel from a night out on Saturday when they were attacked by dozen or so individuals “armed with machetes, knives, swords,” according to the club’s website. The injuries are reportedly not life-threatening. These were the only details we had a press time, but will have more from France as the story unfolds. Obviously, our thoughts are with the players and their families.
It’s impossible to properly segue from such a story, so forgive us for just going ahead…
Super Rugby: It is now down to 4 teams. Which 4 teams? Well the RWU Super Rugby Superman, Jamie Wall, has the list of the 4 teams and a review of the thrilling 1st round matches that could have gone either way. Please CLICK HERE for his review.
Elgon Cup: The Elgon Cupis held annually and contested between the rugby teams of Kenya and Uganda. The competition and the cups are named after Mount Elgon, a mountain on the border of the two countries. The men’s and women’s teams of these countries compete for their respective Cups on a Home-and-Away basis. This year, the U-19 boys teams of each country has been added into the mix. It was a clean sweep for Kenya over Uganda this weekend. The Kenya boys and men came back from last week’s road loss in emphatic fashion as they dominated in front of their home crowd to win on aggregate. The women continued to show the dominance they displayed the previous week and never let the Uganda women come close. Congrats to Kenya.
Transactions: London Irish announced the addition to their backroom staff of former Ireland assistant coach Mark Tainton as skills and kicking coach for the 2014/15 season.
Cardiff Blues have added versatile fullback and center Geraint Walsh from Pontypridd of the Welsh Premier League. Walsh is the 2013/2014 Principality Premiership Player of the Year and winner of the Try of the Year… Scarlets assistant coach Wayne Pivac emerged as the lead candidate to replace the departed Simon Easterby… Former Munster second row Ian Nagle has decided to take a break from professional rugby in order to pursue his studies. He will further his education in Washington, D.C. as he looks to secure a place in a graduate management program.
Chiefs assistant coach Wayne Smith is set to return to a coaching role with the AIG All Blacks as the defensive coach. With Head Coach Steve Hansen set to take a more hands off role and just focus on managing the players and squad. Counties Manukau coach Tana Umaga has made it known that he is keen to coach the Singapore Super Rugby franchise if they win the bid to be one of the new teams over their immediate competitor Japan in 2016. Umaga is set to show his coaching skills when the Asia Pacific Dragons face the Maori All Blacks later this year.
Heineken to Sponsor The Rugby Champions Cup: The more things change the more the stay the same. The Rugby Champions Cup which will take place this season and replace the Heineken Cup as the top club competition in Europe has landed a sponsor. That sponsor is Heineken. So we have the same contest but slightly re-jigged in its team allotment and with a new name but almost everything else is the same including the sponsor.
BOD wants a B & I stop in P.I.s: Retired British and Irish Lions, Ireland and soon to be IRB Hall of Famer, Brian O’Driscoll believes the 2017 tourists should play a fixture in the Pacific Islands in-route to New Zealand. His BOD-ness went on to say to the Times newspaper that “It’s probably more of a give than take for the Lions [to play in the Pacific Islands] but it would be great for the people there and it would probably take away from that commercial feel that the Lions are this commercial juggernaut. It might be a clever move from the Lions’ point of view to play a game down there.”
USA Rugby News and Updates: Over the weekend USA Rugby named its Collegiate Men’s All-Americans in both 7s and 15s as well as their honorable mentions for both teams. CLICK HERE for the list of players.
The USA Rugby AIG Boys High School All-Americans, sponsored by Aircraft Charter Solutions, played their first of 3 matches in their mini-tournament. The tournament features the Italy U-18s, Uruguay U-18/19s and the the U-18s of the host nation, Argentina. The USA opened with tough loss to the hosts. Please CLICK HERE for a match report.
USA Rugby Boys High School All-Americans | Argentina Tour
USA 13-35 Argentina U18s
USA – Italy U18s – Tuesday, July 22
USA – Uruguay U18/19s – Sunday, July 27
That’s it for now. Feel free to comment below, look for and “Like” our Facebook Rugby Wrap Up Page and follow us on Twitter@: RugbyWrapUp,Junoir Blaber, DJ Eberle, Nick Hall, James Harrington, Cody Kuxmann, Jaime Loyd, Karen Ritter , Jamie Wall, Jake Frechette and Declan Yeats, respectively.